Did Daylight Savings Time Ruin Your Sunday?

Of course not!

Photo: Matthias Bachmann/Flickr

Daylight savings time is the most wonderful time of the year because even though you “lose” an hour of sleep, you gain a precious, beautiful hour of sun: helpful for when it’s the middle of March and still cold. Isn’t it nice to see the sun try and stick around until 7? Doesn’t it feel good to watch the sun set later and later? Isn’t it nice to savor daylight?

Well, apparently daylight savings time ruins lives, if this piece from Bloomberg is any indication.

Proof Daylight Saving Time Is Dumb, Dangerous, and Costly

The suffering of the spring time change begins with the loss of an hour of sleep. That might not seem like a big deal, but researchers have found it can be dangerous to mess with sleep schedules. Car accidents, strokes, and heart attacks spike in the days after the March time change. It turns out that judges, sleep deprived by daylight saving, impose harsher sentences.

Losing an hour of sleep is rough, but the body bounces back remarkably fast. Sunday morning may have been sluggish and slow moving but by Monday, your body should be on the road to recovery, recouping that lost hour and banging on with it. The financial consequence of daylight savings time is interesting to consider: when it stays lighter outside after work hours, people are more willing to spend money at stores. In the winter, when the sun seems to set at 3:30 in the afternoon, workers are more likely to head home and shop online, instead.

“At the end of the day, it’s either dark or light, and [people are] going to make an impulse decision at that point,” Diana Farrell, president and chief executive of the JPMorgan Chase Institute.

One possible explanation for the sharp spending decline, Farrell said, is that the extra hour of darkness could push more people to shop online rather than in-person.

Logically, it makes sense, but practically, I don’t know if I buy it. The impulse to head home immediately when it’s dark out is there, but if people need to do stuff after work, whether it be buy new socks or touch sweaters or go grocery shopping, aren’t they going to just do it? There is something magical about getting out of work and realizing that it is still blazingly, beautifully bright outside, but I’d wager that temperature has more to do with it than anything else.

Is daylight savings time a bad time for you? I understand that for those with children, it can be, but even if you don’t have kids, does this tiny adjustment upend your entire existence? Do you spend more money when it’s light outside? Does any of this resonate? Help me understand.

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